If you’re like me, you sometimes think you’d be happy to hit 40%. Am I right?
Let’s look now at your own personal inventory and see if we can identify where you’ll want to make improvements, and where you have strengths to build on. Take the time to ask yourself the following questions. Answer them in writing, because I believe you’ll be surprised how much your answers change with time and practice.
- Do you feel comfortable making certain types of presentations, but not others? If so, what makes the difference? Are you comfortable making a sales pitch, but not reporting to the board on sales figures? Can you perform Hamlet, but freeze up when it’s time to recount a personal story at a party? Your answers to these questions may give you clues as to your personal style. Can you see that you are more comfortable teaching rather than storytelling? Persuading rather than probing?
- How does fear affect you when it’s time to make a presentation? Can you recall your worst experience of making a presentation? What happened? What was the fall-out? Once you understand how or when fear controls you, you are ready to tackle that fear.
- How do you feel when you make a presentation to a group? Physically? Emotionally?
- When was the last time somebody said, “Did you hear what I said?” or “That’s not what I said at all!” How often do you get signals such as those that the lines of communication have broken down between you and someone else?
- What do you do with your hands when you make a presentation?
- How often do you ‘wing it’ when it’s time to make a presentation?
As you make your way through your journey of becoming a better communicator, your answers to these questions will mark the spots where you need to strengthen your tools and where to put your focus. Stay tuned next month where I’ll be sharing a few simple but effective ways to instantly connect with your audience!
If you’re serious about advancing your skills and making an investment in yourself, we invite you to our Excellence in Speaking Institute. Classes are filling up quickly so don’t delay! Visit this page to read feedback from our graduates about their experience.